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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Another thread got me thinking, who has the "it" factor and who doesn't? I have worked with some people that should not be allowed to look at a wrench, let alone touch one. They have an amazing ability to cross thread, strip and break anything they touch, yet leave what should be tight loose (lug nuts come loose, etc). They are a danger to themselves and anyone in their vicinity :smt103

Signs you have the "it" factor...

  • You never strip out or break a bolt on assembly... can easily feel the correct amount of torque
  • Never cross thread anything, ever. Always turn the correct direction, even when upside down or reaching around 180 degrees to get to a awkward location bolt.
  • Can easily figure out how to assemble and disassemble pretty much anything mechanical
  • Have decent or above average speed.... its not gonna take you all day to change the oil.
  • Very good at removing stuck bolts. Use the right combination of penetrant, heat, impact, how much force can be applied and back off just before its getting ready to strip and try another method.
  • Creative using tools beyond what they are designed for (using a metric wrench when the correct size sae is fitting too loose or visa versa, two wrenches end to end for better leverage, a crescent wrench on a screwdriver for awkward positions or more torque needed, ...)
  • Good accessing awkward position bolts (typical example header bolts on a stock vehicle with big a/c box, will not drop the bolt 50 times before getting it started)

Horror stories wall of shame of those who do not...

  • Break, cross thread or strip out brand new bolts on assembly
  • Frequently drops nuts or bolts where they should not be (down intake port, etc). The occasional mistake is ok, everybody does it... but this person is habitual, does it nearly every single time
  • Over tightens everything, breaks ears off carburetors, bends header flanges, etc... you never want to work on something after this person has touched it.
  • Causes alot of collateral damage.... loves the hammer way too much. They jack the car and crush a body panel, scratch the body with a slipping wrench, grease on car interior, etc
  • Takes all day to do the simplest task. You tell them to remove the oil filter and they crush it, remove the drain plug and they strip it out, etc. The occasion mistake is forgivable, but this person does it nearly everytime
  • Breaks, looses or leaves tools under the hood frequently. Many times to exit vehicle in spectacular fashion on the highway. Always has parts "left over" at the end of a job.
 

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In the Beams.
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If you never stripped out a used bolt , you probably have never worked on anything . It happens , it's rare , but it happens. Other than that, Does changing a tire on a ford ranger without removing the wheel ( no lug wrench on hand ) count for an " it " award ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
If you never stripped out a used bolt , you probably have never worked on anything . It happens , it's rare , but it happens. Other than that, Does changing a tire on a ford ranger without removing the wheel ( no lug wrench on hand ) count for an " it " award ?
I was thinking new bolt when I wrote that part, didn't spell it out though. That one came from a co-worker when we were assembling a rack extension for a machine tool. He started on one side, I started on the other... when we met in the middle he had broken two brand new bolts somehow.

That's pretty good on the tire... best I have done was mount them myself in the yard years ago by driving on the edge while somebody stood on the rim
 

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One year at Columbus I got a tent spike in my slick between rounds. I used my trailer jack to break the beads, screw drivers and pry bars to get the one bead over the lip and got a new tube in it.


If you never stripped out a used bolt , you probably have never worked on anything . It happens , it's rare , but it happens. Other than that, Does changing a tire on a ford ranger without removing the wheel ( no lug wrench on hand ) count for an " it " award ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
When wrenching or building on anything, the most important thing is " Dont get Excited " and double check your work...
I had one person I know in mind when writing alot of these. He is the type that takes his car for oil change and work at the dealer everytime.

I think he tries to fit in and plays "He Man" when he helps and gets overambitious and wreaks havoc in his path of every nut and bolt he touches
 

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Oh yeah we all have had the pleasure of work with a clown like that! And yes we all have our bone head moments of fame.

Years ago, my brother in-law wanted to help me pull the engine from my Nova because he wanted to 'learn' to work on cars, well this should've been my first clue. It was time to jack up the car and put it on jack stands and I handed him the floor jack assuming he knew where to lift the car. As he was jacking the car I hear sound like you flexed a hand saw blade. After a closer look he had jacked up the front of the with the oil pan. That noise was the oil pan collapsing. Good thing it was just a cheap stock oil pan.

After that I watched every move he made, it wasn't long I called it quits for the day just to get him away from me and my car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
After a closer look he had jacked up the front of the with the oil pan. That noise was the oil pan collapsing.
Ouch :mad: ... reminds me of another person that wanted to learn and help me. We were putting on a intake. I hand him half the bolts for one side and I got the other half.

A few minutes later before I had a chance to get started on my side, he said "all tighty". He had cranked all his side down with everything he had before I even had a chance to start my side. Later that day, he broke the ear off my carb... needless to say, he wasn't invited to "learn and help" anymore
 

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I'm the guy that people go to to fix their oops problems. Ugh. in a small town the car scene is pretty small, and well when the shit hits the fan I'm the guy that can figure it out.... Now I'm a hobbyist and charge beer money mostly, after reading that I think I have to riase my prices. Last one was a BBM exhaust stud. Was broke off at the head, no amount of heat or oils combined with an ez out would work. I ended up working my way up with number, letter and fractional drill bits until I got most of it drilled out, then cleaned a few top threads of the leftover "foil" with a sharp tig tungsten and was able to get a tap to start and clean the rest of the threads out. I made another stud on the lathe and send him on his way... Broken bolts are the worst.
 

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I am pretty good imo. In my younger days I crossthrwaded and broke a few bolts. Now I am a lot more careful. I taught myself to beat on a smaller socket for a crossthreaded bolt. It still amazes me how my dad will take a hammer and chisel and remove stripped bolts
 

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I agree with most of the signs of the "it" factor except for the one that says you can use tools for what they are not designed for. If anything that shows lack of "it" Sure if its all you have at the time maybe but if there are the proper tools then no way. I used to work for GE as a contract turbine mechanic and double wrenching was the first way to get yourself kicked off the turbine deck.
 

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Another thread got me thinking, who has the "it" factor and who doesn't? I have worked with some people that should not be allowed to look at a wrench, let alone touch one. They have an amazing ability to cross thread, strip and break anything they touch, yet leave what should be tight loose (lug nuts come loose, etc). They are a danger to themselves and anyone in their vicinity :smt103

Signs you have the "it" factor...

  • You never strip out or break a bolt on assembly... can easily feel the correct amount of torque
  • Never cross thread anything, ever. Always turn the correct direction, even when upside down or reaching around 180 degrees to get to a awkward location bolt.
  • Can easily figure out how to assemble and disassemble pretty much anything mechanical
  • Have decent or above average speed.... its not gonna take you all day to change the oil.
  • Very good at removing stuck bolts. Use the right combination of penetrant, heat, impact, how much force can be applied and back off just before its getting ready to strip and try another method.
  • Creative using tools beyond what they are designed for (using a metric wrench when the correct size sae is fitting too loose or visa versa, two wrenches end to end for better leverage, a crescent wrench on a screwdriver for awkward positions or more torque needed, ...)
  • Good accessing awkward position bolts (typical example header bolts on a stock vehicle with big a/c box, will not drop the bolt 50 times before getting it started)
Horror stories wall of shame of those who do not...

  • Break, cross thread or strip out brand new bolts on assembly
  • Frequently drops nuts or bolts where they should not be (down intake port, etc). The occasional mistake is ok, everybody does it... but this person is habitual, does it nearly every single time
  • Over tightens everything, breaks ears off carburetors, bends header flanges, etc... you never want to work on something after this person has touched it.
  • Causes alot of collateral damage.... loves the hammer way too much. They jack the car and crush a body panel, scratch the body with a slipping wrench, grease on car interior, etc
  • Takes all day to do the simplest task. You tell them to remove the oil filter and they crush it, remove the drain plug and they strip it out, etc. The occasion mistake is forgivable, but this person does it nearly everytime
  • Breaks, looses or leaves tools under the hood frequently. Many times to exit vehicle in spectacular fashion on the highway. Always has parts "left over" at the end of a job.
you must be a shop owner
 
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